Last night, close to fifty youth from various NGOs, including 350.org, managed to disrupt a climate deniers meeting at the Marriot Hotel in downtown Copenhagen, Denmark; I was fortunate enough to be a part of that group. The meeting was held by Americans for Prosperity, a prominent and conservative “think-tank”. The meeting was scheduled as part of their Hot Air Tour and was intended to “expose the ballooning costs of global warming hysteria.” The live broadcast was shown simultaneously in forty climate-denier parties across America, which is why the COP15 youth singled it out as an excellent way to get their voices and the truth heard. 

There were not more than ten people in attendance before we arrived: a paltry five audience members, a two person camera crew, Tim Phillips and Lord Monckton (both notorious climate change deniers). We entered the conference room slowly and in small groups, so as to not attract attention to ourselves; the idea was to keep the real supporters of the meeting unaware of our plans until we had been seated and the broadcast had begun. Five minutes after the cameras started rolling, our group stood and unveiled two large banners saying “Climate Disaster Ahead” and “Clean Energy Now”. We rushed the stage, which put fifty youth between Tim Phillips and the camera, as we chanted “Real American for Prosperity are Americans for clean energy!” Even as Tim tried to evade our presence by moving to stand on top of table, we surrounded him again.

 

"Clean energy creates jobs," says Rachel Barge, a 24-year-old entrepreneur from San Francisco, CA who was the first young person to raise her voice at the event. "These climate action delayers and science deniers are stealing bold, new economic opportunities from the American public." Laura Comer, 21, of Strongsville, OH, seconded Barge, saying, "We’re representing the majority of Americans on this, particularly young Americans. Real America wants clean energy – not more fossil fuel-funded lies about the science" (http://www.sustainus.org).

An unexpected side note to this story: as we were surrounding Tim Phillips and his camera crew, Lord Monckton went to the podium and began calling us “Hitler Youth” and “Nazis”. Today, a couple of stickers mysteriously "appeared" on his fine suit jacket during his visit to the SustainUs booth at the conference. I have to say, this is a new favorite photo of mine:

 

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